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Pork carnitas in a white serving bowl topped with lime slices.
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5 from 1 vote

Instant Pot Carnitas

This easy Instant Pot Carnitas recipe is loaded with Mexican spices and citrus juices to create a melt-in-your-mouth instant pot pork carnitas recipe in only 90 minutes! It's similar to our Slow Cooker Carnitas recipe, without the wait. Use marinated carnitas in taco recipes, burritos, nachos and more!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Come To Pressure & Natural Release Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Healthy Recipes, Instant Pot Dinner, Instant Pot Recipes, Pork Shoulder Recipes
Servings: 8 Servings
Calories: 191kcal
Author: Darcey Olson
Cost: $15


  • Lb Pork Shoulder, Boneless
  • ¼ cup Orange Juice, Freshly Squeezed
  • 1 tbsp Lime Juice, Freshly Squeezed
  • 2 tsp Coarse Sea Salt
  • 2 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1 tsp Chili Powder
  • 1 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Dried Mexican Oregano (*Note 1 )
  • ½ tsp Ground Black Pepper
  • 1 cup Broth (Chicken, Beef or Vegetable) (*Note 2 )


  • Cut the pork shoulder into 4" chunks and place inside the instant pot.
  • Add the orange juice, lime juice, salt, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, black pepper and broth to the instant pot. Mix thoroughly to coat the pork.
  • Place the lid on the Instant Pot, making sure the valve is in the "sealed" position. Pressure cook on high for 45 minutes.
  • Let the pressure naturally release for 15 minutes before quick releasing the rest.
  • Remove the lid and shred the pork with two forks. It's now ready to add to tacos, burritos, or more!


  • Set a strainer over a large bowl and strain out the meat, reserving the cooking liquid.
  • Oven - Once you've removed the carnitas from the carnitas sauce, spread the shredded pork on a large foil-lined baking sheet and broil in the oven on high for 5 minutes. Add up to 5 more minutes for extra crispy carnitas. Add 1/2-1 cup of cooking liquid back to the carnitas to juice them back up.
  • Air Fryer - Once you've removed the carnitas from the carnitas sauce, transfer the carnitas meat back to the Instant Pot. Place the Instant Pot Air Fryer lid on top and set to air fry for 10-12 minutes at 400°F for 12 minutes. Toss at the half way mark to ensure even crisping. Add 1/2-1 cup of cooking liquid back to the carnitas to juice them back up.



Note 1 -  Regular oregano will also work if you don't have, or can't find, Mexican oregano.
Note 2 - We use Instant Pot Bone Broth if we have some on hand.


Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 32g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 85mg | Sodium: 781mg | Potassium: 579mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 164IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 2mg